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In 2006, the Pee Dee Fiction and Poetry Festival was established. Luther F. Carter, president of Francis Marion University, had that idea. After beginning as a Pee Dee Fiction event, the gathering has expanded to include poets and fiction authors. Its objective is to attract famous people to the school. (Francis Marion University).
At least three eminent authors have attended the festival, which is conducted every autumn. It comprises of author readings, panel discussions, and colloquium sessions. It involves a quick review of the author's writings and taking audience queries. The Pee Dee Fiction and Poetry festival was held at Lowrimore auditorium of Francis Marion University. It cut across 9 and 10 of November 2017. The panel sat at the podium with Dan Chaon up front and center. The venue was almost full, with a mixture of students and lectures, by 11:30 am when the event started. It began by Chaon, who was dressed in a blue dress shirt with a black suit jacket, goatee with glasses and scruffy hair, reading a short excerpt from his books.
Dan explains why he covers a kind of fiction, joking in how his style resembles a lot of killing and negative things which he is not. He claims to reflect his writing based on the people he know. He avoids personal elements by not directly writing about events in his life but more on circumstances of other people’s lives. An exciting question covers on how they decide on the collection to be released and their control over the process. He says the book includes a “certain period of your life.” He started during grad school by rushing and putting his work out to the public without checking it as thoroughly as he did later in life. He developed his stories based on his previous works which assist in developing a new character. Chaon covers how his experience of having a rough relationship with his biological mother aided him to create variations in his stories based on his experiences. In response to where the writing takes place and whether it affects the style and final production, Chaon states that his family lived in a trailer. The infatuation with attics led to him moving his office into an attic where he does much of his writing. Chaon further responded to how other author influenced him. While growing up in a rural part of Nebraska, while in 7th grade, he established contact with Ray Bradbury, an American author. They always communicated using letters where he was influenced in becoming a writer. Chaon emphasizes that getting outside of your comfort zone and allowing the anxiety to take hold will enable you to understand your comfort zone along with the vulnerability that comes with it (Francis Marion University).
The festivals were quite inspiring on learning that small steps eventually end up building a great author. The unrelenting effort to publish frequent, short poetic work with intended release to a few audience ends up growing. Overcoming the writer’s block is aided at the time by not focusing on a spersonal situations. The start can be captured by stealing a conversation or describing a person or an item.
In writing, the subject is vital to the author as it guides the direction of the artistic work. The subject limits deviation and makes the story compelling which facilitate readers connect with the author. Attending cultural events helps one develop these skills as they learn from the best writers. It provides a platform for entertainment, and the interactions change students to better writers.
Francis Marion University. "History – Pee Dee Fiction and Poetry Festival." Peedeefiction.Org, 2017, http://peedeefiction.org/history/. Accessed: 14 November 2017
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